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Fargo father was more than 3 times over limit in fatal DUI crash, charges say

Christopher Devine1 / 3
Jason Devine, 7, and his brother, Branden Devine, 5, were critically injured in a crash Saturday, March 23, in south Fargo. Jason died Tuesday, March 26, according to a GoFundMe page a family friend set up to raise money for medical and funeral expenses. Special to The Forum2 / 3
Firefighters responded to a crash Saturday night, March 23, in south Fargo that left two boys critically injured. One of the boys died Tuesday, March 26. Special to The Forum3 / 3

FARGO — The blood-alcohol level of a father behind the wheel during a car crash that fatally injured his 7-year-old son and critically injured his 5-year-old son was allegedly more than three times the legal limit, according to documents filed Thursday, March 28, in Cass County District Court.

Christopher Lee Devine, 31, of Fargo faces one felony count of criminal vehicular homicide and two felony counts of criminal vehicular injury.

At 7:38 p.m. Saturday, March 23, Fargo police responded to a two-vehicle crash in the 1300 block of South University Drive, court documents show.

Devine was driving north on University Drive South in a vehicle with three other people, including his two sons in the back seat, court documents said.

The vehicle lost control and slid across the lanes before being struck on the rear passenger side by a second vehicle, court documents show. All four people in Devine’s vehicle were injured and taken to a local hospital.

Devine told authorities he consumed alcohol before driving and had no recollection of the crash, court documents said.

Devine had a blood-alcohol level of 0.267 percent shortly after his arrival at the hospital, court documents said. The legal limit to drive is 0.08 percent.

Court documents do not name Devine’s sons, but according to a Fargo Police Department news release they are 5-year-old Branden Devine and 7-year-old Jason Devine.

Jason Devine died on Tuesday, March 26, and his organs will be donated, according to a GoFundMe webpage set up by Tessa Wilson, a family friend. Branden Devine is in critical condition and has not regained consciousness, court documents show.

Jacob Larson, the front-seat passenger in Devine’s vehicle, told authorities he and Devine had been drinking alcohol before the crash, court documents show. Larson suffered a broken right leg and cuts to his head in the crash.

A preliminary report showed Devine’s vehicle was going about 74 mph four seconds before the crash and about 59 mph one second before the crash, court documents stated. The speed limit on that stretch of University Drive South is 35 mph.

The motorists in the other vehicle were not injured in the crash, court documents show.

Devine was hospitalized after the crash due to his injuries. As of Thursday afternoon, March 28, he had not been booked into Cass County Jail.

Court records did not list an attorney for him.

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